of the Center for Children's Books
|The Bulletin Dozen is a monthly theme-based list of titles available only on-line. Since we're awfully fond of bakers here at the Bulletin, we thought we'd adopt their philosophy of generosity and throw in an extra one or two when we have them to offer--so don't expect an even dozen. Please feel free to copy, download, or link to these lists. We ask only that you cite the source. See the archive for lists from previous months.
Each Campfire Lights Anew: A Summer Dozen about Camping and Camp
Technological obstacles meant some long-distance teamwork to complete this dozen; none of it would have been required if we'd been where we're supposed to be in summer, sharing a tent or cabin as we prepare for our Red Cross swimming test, develop our campcraft skills, and sing around the campfire. Here's a collection of books for kids who have been--or would like to be--there.
--Deborah Stevenson, Associate Editor; list by Elizabeth Bush, reviewer, and Deborah Stevenson
Tim's convinced that a fishing trip can bring back the good old days before Granddad was stricken with Alzheimer's disease, but their clandestine escape to the lake brings them to a near-miss with tragedy. (BCCB 10/99)
In alternating chapters, the friends narrate their experiences at and surrounding their respective sojourns at an all-black camp and an integrated camp (circa 1950s), where segregation and racism loom as large as swimming and playing pranks. (BCCB 9/97)
Outcast in a nasty adolescent ritual and stranded naked on an island, boy and girl misfits from neighboring camps demonstrate remarkable cooperation and resilience in extricating themselves from their situation and turning their misfortune into true friendship. Taut and controversial, this is probably *the* camping must-read. (BCCB 10/87)
This sequel to The Cat Ate My Gum Suit offers a classic but well executed camp story as camp-counselor Marcy surmounts problems and finds new strengths in herself. (BCCB 12/80)
Cody's feeling betrayed--up until now, his parents had taken good care of him, but now they're cutting the cord--the electric cord--sending him off to camp for an unwelcome low-tech holiday.
Evocative verse and star-studded and sun-splashed acrylic paintings conjure the pleasures of a family camping trip, from the wiggly maneuvers of dressing inside a sleeping bag to a nosy moon, "tipping/ a slender/ silver ear" to eavesdrop on whispered secrets. (BCCB 5/01)
Andrew's ready to join the family tradition of happy summers at camp, but he soon finds that rivalries add an tense undercurrent--that proves tragic. (BCCB 11/98)
After a wild and rebellious year, fifteen-year-old Jessie is shipped off for a curative wilderness experience and finds a new kind of wildness in white-water rafting. (BCCB 3/91)
This comic account of a school camping trip in the Australian outback, leeches and all, doesn't shirk from some of the darker aspects of adult-kid dynamics. (BCCB 9/00)
Bobby, hero of Lipsyte's One Fat Summer, didn't plan on being a camp counselor for the summer, but it brings him surprising opportunities and challenges. (BCCB 4/81)
It's 1945, and German-Jewish refugee Annie Platt stretches her horizons even further by attendiong a coed and multiracial summer camp in this thoughtful account of maturation. (BCCB 3/93)
A high-school summer camp for incoming freshmen promises a "jump start" on the school year but delivers self-deprecating, overweight narrator Elvin a whole lot of humiliation as he vies for a place on the wrestling team. (BCCB 10/95)
A trio of campers escape from Camp (well, actually fat-farm) Noo Yoo and hole up in Mavis' temporarily parentless mansion, from whence they launch a riotous campaign against "the thin and judgmental." (BCCB 6/01)
Abigail sets herself lofty goals for summer camp, from high diving to meeting her deceased father's perceived expectation of bravery, but her cruel "dare" on another camper leaves her with unfulfilled aspirations, a burden of shame, and a healthy dose of self-knowledge. (BCCB 2/96)
This page was last updated on July 1, 2001.